Monday, January 31, 2011

Judge rules Obamacare unconstitutional!

U.S. district judge Roger Vinson ruled today that Obamacare is unconstitutional and void. He threw out the whole 2200-plus page law saying that to simply void the mandate that people must purchase insurance would leave an unworkable law and that it was beyond his ability and authority to determine which of the rest of the law would be workable without the mandate.

He struck down the law saying the Commerce Clause did not give Congress the power to mandate that people purchase insurance arguing,"the Commerce Clause can only reach individuals and entities engaged in an 'activity' and because the plaintiffs maintain that an individual’s failure to purchase health insurance is, almost by definition, 'inactivity,' the individual mandate goes beyond the Commerce Clause and is unconstitutional."

The judges decision will be appealed the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals but will likely end up in the Supreme Court. In making his decisions the judge quoted the Federalist Papers and James Madison. Reading the judges decision is inspirational. It is good to know that we have judges who take their duty seriously. To read the entire 78 page decision click here.

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REPORT FROM THE GREEN HILLS BREAKFAST SUMMIT

A Great Meeting. Emily Evans frames the Fairground Debate.
by Peter Voysey

After a one week postponement due to inclement weather, the morning of Saturday, January 29 was sunny, much warmer and very hopeful. Although the appointed time was 8:15 a.m. for the beginning of the breakfast service, some folks showed up at 8 a.m. all ready to go with our Green Hills Kick-Off Meeting For 2011.

This was our first time at our new meeting venue—Swett’s of Green Hills---located in the Retired Teachers’ Building at 2209 Abbott Martin Road, in the heart of the Green Hills Business District. The Swett family rallied around to serve everybody a hearty breakfast and then we settled down to hear about The Hottest Topic In Davidson County—The Tennessee State Fairgrounds Issue.

Our fellow group member and Metro Council Representative, Carter Todd (District 34) served as the program chairman for this meeting, and he introduced the topic and our special guest speaker, Council Member Emily Evans (District 23). Emily Evans’ background includes two decades of experience in the area of municipal finance and she drew upon this in her discussion. She pointed out that Mayors want to attract businesses to their area (they invariably see it as a part of their ‘legacy’). In Nashville (and other cities) free land for companies to build upon is especially important, along with tax abatement and other inducements. Interestingly, the “Economic Impact Study” done in connection with the Fairgrounds site was said to be only some two (2) pages in length.

Both Carter and Emily spoke of the historical importance of the Fairgrounds throughout the history of Nashville, and Emily believes that this was not fully appreciated by those pushing for redevelopment of the property. It was also pointed out that some 40 acres of the site are located in the Flood Way.

Other council members in the audience commented that the Flea Market and other commercial events held at the fairgrounds are very important to the financial success of a very large number of independent small businesses who rely upon this income-producing opportunity.

At least one audience member expressed concern about the effect the racetrack at the fairgrounds could have upon residential property values. In response, Emily noted that council members had received a diversity of viewpoints from individuals living in the neighborhood. Some—whose property is located right next to the racetrack—love racing and the racetrack. All of this was reflected in the close vote on a key proposal before the Council in the course of the overall consideration at the recent public meeting attended by over 1,000 people.

It was a fascinating meeting for our group, with over 40 enthusiastic attendees.
Peter along with his wife Gail are Event Chairs of the Green Hills Summit. Peter is also on the Executive Committee of the Davidson County Republican Party.

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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Run for Metro Council



I did't know Metro engaged in "Central Planning." In fact, I think it is impossible for a local government to engage in central planning. Central planning is what Russia and China did. We have a general plan which addresses land use and guides zoning decisions and we have a street plan and a parks plan and lots of plans but central planning usually refers to a system of extensive central government control of the economy. Those libertarians get carried away sometimes. Nevertheless, I would welcome a couple libertarians on the Metro Council. You can be sure they would vote against the abuse of eminent domain. I would like to see a lot of new faces on the Metro Council.

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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Senator Bob Corker: Congress Must Act Courageously to Reduce Spending



"I still don't believe the memo has been received" said Bob Corker in response to a question about President Obama's State of the Union address.  "I know we must do things much, much, more serious and severe than were laid out last night."

Corker discussed the need for Washington to act courageously to bring spending under control during CNBC’s “Squawk Fiscal Summit.” He was member of a panel that included Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad, D-N.D., Economist Alice Rivlin, and former Service Employees International Union (SEIU) president Andy Stern.

During the fall, Corker spoke to 43 audiences across Tennessee and delivered sobering statistics about America’s fiscal situation.

• In 2009 the federal government spent $1.4 trillion more than it took in, borrowing nearly 40 cents of every dollar.
• The gap between spending and revenue is almost four times the historic average. Even when we reach historic revenue levels, we are still projected to be spending nearly six percent more of our gross domestic product than we take in, and the gap will continue to widen.
• By 2035, on our current trajectory, our debt will reach 185 percent of GDP. If this occurs, interest payments on our debt will reach nearly nine percent of GDP – as much as we currently spend on national defense, education, roads, and all government agencies combined.

Next week Senator Corker and Senator Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., will introduce legislation to dramatically cut spending over the next 10 years. 

I am proud to have Bob Corker as my Senator and think everyone needs to hear his message, especially the people of Iowa.

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Governor Ramsey: To reform education, we must organize to match TEA.

Last night, Lieutenant Governor Ron Ramsey spoke to a group of conservative leaders and laid out a conservative agenda. He was speaking to Conservative Groups of Middle Tennessee which is a loose coalition of conservative, Republican, Libertarian, and Tea Party leaders in middle Tennessee. The group has no officers or agenda, but provides a networking opportunity for right-of-center leaders in the area. . Last night’s meeting was at Logan’s Roadhouse on Elliston place and the meeting room was packed.

Governor Ramsey spoke at length about the Republican agenda, including cutting the size of state government and improving education. Ramsey was enthusiastic and energetic. He spoke for about fourty-five minutes and took questions for about as long. He said with a Republican governor and Republicans controlling both houses of the State Legislature, Republicans had a rare opportunity to put Republican ideas into practice and prove we can govern.

He stressed the need to mobilize citizens to counter the lobbing power of the Tennessee Education Association. He said some recently elected good conservatives were already starting to get weak in the knees at the prospect of standing up to the TEA. He said TEA is formidable and can flood the State legislature with phone calls and emails at a moment’s notice. Conservative need to increase their cooperation and create a network that can match TEA in mobilizing citizens to lobby their legislators, said Ramsey. He was critical of teacher tenure and teacher collective bargaining and said TEA stood in the way of real education reform.

Ramsey also spoke about the situation in Memphis, where Memphis city schools which have some of the worst schools in the state are attempting to disband and Shelby County which has some of the best schools in the state does not want to have to have to absorb the Memphis failing schools. The State Constitution requires each county to maintain a public schools system but there is no such requirement for cities. In the case of Memphis, the Memphis school system is much larger than the Shelby County school system. He said this is a perfect opportunity for the state to take over a failing school system and use innovation and reform to improve public education.

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Becoming an American Citizen

By guest blogger Matt Nemeth

Today I was honored to witness something I have never seen. Down at the Federal courthouse here in Nashville, immigrants were sworn in as legal, naturalized citizens.

I was there to watch my friend, Leo, become an American. He was one of 60 people from 29 different nationalities being sworn in. Some of these individuals hailed from countries such as Canada, Guatemala, Cuba and Iran.

My friend was born and raised in Mexico. His wife is an American and they had met while she was vacationing in his home country. After some time, they got married and he moved here to the United States.

As long as I have known Leo, he has wanted to get his American citizenship. Today, after years of work and many fees, he earned it.

Right now we have anywhere between 15 and 20 million illegal immigrants residing here in the United States. None have gone through the process to become naturalized citizens nor do they appear to want to. They have not even begun to make the efforts that Leo has.

In the meantime, our politicians are fighting to grant these law-breakers citizenship without having to go through the same process as everyone else. In other words, our own elected officials are willing to have illegal immigrants jump in front of those working towards their citizenship and receive it first and possibly for free.

It cost my friend roughly $3500 in applications, travel, and other related expenses to get where he is. Would these politicians force those here illegally to pay the same monetary price?

Any politician who preaches amnesty also preaches putting an individual above the law. They feel that someone who breaks our laws is entitled to as little punishment as possible and the cherished gift of citizenship.

Each of those 60 people who became American’s today worked incredibly hard to earn this. They undoubtedly cherish what they now have. How do they feel knowing that politicians are willing to give their gift to someone else who did not sacrifice for it? Would those here illegally cherish their gift of independence?
The judge presiding the ceremony made an excellent observation: each person
Receiving their citizenship today gets to celebrate two days of independence every year. They get to bask in the festivities of the 4th of July to honor our nations independence and they get to celebrate every January 27th their own personal holiday. They celebrate their own independence.

No one in that room would dare take for granted what they have achieved. We should all be honored that they went to these great lengths to become our countrymen. This is something that our politicians should not desecrate through an amnesty bill. The achievements made are something that should never be legislated.

Matt Nemeth is the host of the West Nashville Eggs and Bacon Summit. It meets every 3rd Saturday of the month at the Shoney’s on White Bridge Rd.  Matt works as a salesman and currently lives downtown with his dog, Sam.

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

GREEN HILLS SUMMIT: TN STATE FAIRGROUNDS


Rise & Shine, Join Your Fellow GOP’ers

GREEN HILLS SUMMI
Saturday, January 29, 2011 **NEW DATE!**Swett’s – Green Hills – 2209 Abbott Martin Rd


 Breakfast begins at 8:15 am ($8.75 cash, no credit cards)
Meeting begins at 9 am (sharp)
                                                      
THE HOTTEST TOPIC IN THE COUNTY: TN STATE FAIRGROUNDS

--What Were The Key Issues In The Debate?

--Why Did Over 1,000 Attend Tuesday Night’s Council Meeting?

--The Larger Issue: What Should Be The Government’s Role In Economic Development?

Come Hear Prominent Council Member Emily Evans (23)

Event Chairmen – Peter and Gail Voysey
Kathleen Starnes, DCRP Chair
Rod Williams, DCRP Summit Coordinator

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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Egypt's Muslims Attend Coptic Christmas Mass, Serving as 'Human Shields'

To those who think the only good Muslim is a dead Muslim and to those who get all of their news about the Muslim world from Islamophobic groups like ACT for America, you probably missed this good news:


Egypt's Muslims Attend Coptic Christmas Mass, Serving as 'Human Shields'


Egypt's majority Muslim population stuck to its word Thursday night. What had been a promise of solidarity to the weary Coptic community, was honoured, when thousands of Muslims showed up at Coptic Christmas eve mass services in churches around the country and at candle light vigils held outside.

From the well-known to the unknown, Muslims had offered their bodies as "human shields" for last night's mass, making a pledge to collectively fight the threat of Islamic militants and towards an Egypt free from sectarian strife.

"We either live together, or we die together," was the sloganeering genius of Mohamed El-Sawy, a Muslim arts tycoon whose cultural centre distributed flyers at churches in Cairo Thursday night, and who has been credited with first floating the "human shield" idea.

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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Our Fairgounds Issue Makes the New York Times

I was surprised to see the Nashville fairgrounds story make the New York Times. In my view this is a balanced report on the issue.

In Nashville, Debate Over Racetrack Pits Nostalgia and Change
By CAMPBELL ROBERTSON, New York Times, Published: January 20, 2011


NASHVILLE — Shannon McCullough has a favorite lullaby, and it begins with the revving of a carbureted V8 engine. From her house on Merritt Avenue she could hear it most of her life, the hypnotic, oscillating drone as the stock cars approached and receded, approached and receded. (link)

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Friday, January 21, 2011

Green Hills Breakfast Summit postponed one week

***BULLETIN***

Due to weather conditions, the Green Hills Breakfast Summit scheduled for tomorrow with Emily Evans is postponed one week.

See you at Swett's-Green Hills on Saturday, January 29.

Peter & Gail Voysey
Event Chairs
DCRP Green Hills Breakfast Summit

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Jihadist fellow traveler watch: Chris Christie

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is the latest victim of the Muslim Jihadist witch hunt. The anti-Muslim bigots looking for Jihadist under every bed are not going to be happy until they have tarnished the reputation of every Republican who does not share their bigotry.

Chris Christie is a solid conservative and a rising star in the Republican Party. Chris Christie's crime, however, is that he appointed a prominent Muslim immigration attorney to a judgeship. As an attorney, this appointee had defended several Muslim-Americans who were picked up for “suspicious” activity following the September 11th attacks. All of the men were subsequently cleared of any kind of connection to the attacks of 9-11.

Pamela Gellar has said Christie is "in bed with the enemy." Others have said he has taken the first step to turning New Jersey into a Sharia state.

To the anti-Muslim bigots, guilt or innocents doesn't matter; all Muslims are the enemy and the only good Muslim is a dead Muslim. The anti-Muslim paranoids do not only not believe in freedom of religion, neither do they believe in the presumption of innocents and the right to the accused of due process. They do believe in guilt by association. (link)

For more read; Jersey: Governor Christie’s Dirty Islamist Ties

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Sunday, January 16, 2011

What a Great Weekend! The Inauguration of Bill Haslam

This has been a fun weekend! I attended the inaugural concert on Friday night, and the prayer service, the inauguration and the ball on Saturday. It was a weekend of celebration, spiritual renewal, good will, sharing a good time with a brother and sister, networking and hobnobbing and greeting friends, patriotic stirrings, reflection, and dancing and partying.


One thing that struck is, that despite the terrible events of Tucson just a few days ago, our elected officials are still very accessible.  Thre was no checking of handbags, or pat downs or metal detector scans. I had the opportunity to shake hands and exchange pleasantries with Governor Haslam, Governor Winfield Dunn, and Senator Bob Corker. While, I recognize the security risk for our elected officials, I am glad they are still accessible and that our concern for security had not curtailed our freedom of assemble or our ability to interact with our elected officials.

Below is my report of inaugural events:

The Concert: The concert was a benefit for TN Achieves a scholarship program for community college students. This is a great program that makes it possible many students to attend a community college who otherwise could not afford to do so. The show featured opening act Bo Bice who did a three-song set, accompanied only by a single guitar player. It was low-key but Ok for an opening act. Bice has had some success and was second to Carrie Underwood in the fourth season of American Idol but I was not familiar with him .

The second act was Diamond Rio. For those who don't know them, they have been around since 1984 and have had had the same band members the whole time. They got their start at the old Opryland theme park. They have had a string of hits and won numerous CMA awards and ACM award and nominations for Grammy awards. They are talented performers and musicians. They played past hits and material from a new album. If you are not sure who they are, Meet in the Middle and One More Day were two really big hits from the band. They provided a high-energy show and preformed for about an hour. I had seen them a couple times in the past so was very familiar with their performance. One thing they did that was different is they performed a set of 70 rock classics with a banjo and mandolin in a bluegrass style. They put on an enjoyable show.

Sara Evans closed out the show and also performed for about an hour. She has also had a string of CMA and AMC awards. One of her biggest hits of recent years was "Suds in the Bucket and clothes on the line." She has a tremendous voice and can hold a note forever. I enjoyed her performance much more than I anticipated.

Bill Haslam and Christy were seated front and center and before the show and during the intermission between Rio and Evans, well-wishers had the opportunity shake hands and greet them. Also, former Governor Winfield Dunn was there sitting in front and was gracious in greeting the public. Kix Brooks of the Brooks and Dunn duo addressed the crowd with remarks honoring Haslum and Haslum spoke briefly.

I was surprised that the show was not a sold-out show. The 4500 capacity venue was only a little over half full.  $10 is a cheap price for a concert with two hit acts and the money went to a good cause. I would have thought that country music fans would have attended the show, even if they were not die-hard Republicans.

The Prayer Service. This event was very moving and spiritual. I got a blessing. The Bible passages and prayers called for people to pray for our leaders and to love and respect one another and to seek God's guidance.

The event was in the Ryman auditorium. The Ryman is my favorite venue in town.  It is historical, has great acoustics and while it can seat over 2300 people, it has an intimate feel and there are no bad seats. The sun was shining through the colored windows of the building creating a nice glow. The building was at capacity.

The Nashville Choir was fantastic! I was not familiar with them prior to this performance. There must be 250 members and they were great! They performed the Doxology and Agnus Dei and it was very moving. Later in the program they sang How Great Thou Art. Other performances in the program was a solo by Melinda Doolittle, a graduate of Belmont University and another American Idol winner who has gone on to have a successful gospel music career. A version of Amassing Grace was performed a capella by the Oak Ridge Boys.

The program was ecumenical. The opening prayer was by Davidson County General Sessions Judge Leon Rueben, who is Jewish. Other prayers were delivered by Father Edward Steiner of the Cathedral of the Incarnation and a pastor of a Baptist Church and a pastor of a Presbyterian Church.

Selected bible passages were read by various dignitaries including Beth Harwell, Speaker of the House;  A. C Warton, Mayor of Memphis; and former Governor Winfield Dunn. A sermon was delivered by Reverend John Wood of Cedar Springs Presbyterian church, Bill Haslam's home church in Knoxville.


Reverent Wood reference the passage from Jeremiah that had just been read by Governor Dunn. The passage calls for the captive children of Israel to seek the peace of the city where they were held captive. The passage says that if those holding you do well, it benefits you. Reverend Wood, said if God wished for the captive of Israel to pray for the peace of the city in which they were captives, should we as free people not wish the best for our nation and those who are govern us even if they are of another party.

The Inauguration: It was very stirring event. I still get goose bumps when the National Anthem is played and when a mass of people recite the Pledge of allegiance. I enjoy the military band music, the presentation of the colors, the taking of oaths and all of the ceremonial aspect of events such as this.

The sun was shining bright, and the air was still and the 45 degree temperature did not seem cold. Everyone spoke well of each other. Outgoing Governor Phil Bredesen got warm applause and praise and everyone was gracious. Bill Haslam gave a good speech saying that to compete for jobs, Tennessee must continue to improve education. He said we are not only competing with other states for jobs but compete with other countries and improving education would be his number one goal as govenor. He said the challenges for governing the state are huge. He said government must do more with less. He quoted columnist Thomas Fiedman who recently said government at all levels could no longer give more to people but must enter a phase of taking away benefits and services from people.

Prior to the speech by Governor Haslam, during a performance by a military band, there was a loud boom. I don't know if I was the only one, but I immediately felt fear and thought it was an explosion. However, it was the first cannon of a cannon salute. I am not sure how many times cannons fired but it was several as the band continued to play. At the end of the performance, there was a fly-over of military aircraft flying at roof top level. That was very impressive and exciting.


For a complete text of the speech: Inaugural address


The Ball. The ball was a blast. It was at the Opryland Hotel, which has had $185 million dollar makeover after the devastating flood of seven months ago.  The Opryland hotel is fantastic- the large atriums with fountains and streams and palm trees and waterfalls and art work throughout the hotel. The hotel is also massive. If you have never seen it, see it. It is an experience. You feel like you are somewhere other than Nashville.

For most of us, there are few time in our life to get dressed in our best and party. I enjoy it.  I love women in glittery clothes, wearing very high heels and showing cleavage and everyone in a giddy mood. I am normally a fugal person, but rather than deal with self parking or shuttle buses I paid for valet parking just like a rich Republican. 

My sister Kathleen who often has to lobby the legislature as Executive Director for the Parks and Greenways Foundation was with me and she knew a lot of people in attendance and met and introduced me to a lot of legislators. Also, my brother Tim and his wife Amy were in town from Knoxville and if was fun being at this event with family.
 Louella, Rod, Amy, Tim and Kathleen

It is hard to estimate how many people attended. There was one band playing in the ball room where prior to the ball there had been the dinner. In one of the large atriums, spread out and on several levels, there was a party and another band. While the bands had a little variety in their music, both bands were similar and they were both primarily Rhythm and Blues party bands. The dance floor was packed and people partied hard as the band played. Shout, (Well, you know you make me wanna' (Shout) Kick my heels up and (Shout) Throw my hands up and (Shout) Throw my head back and (Shout) Come on now (Shout) ...) seemed to go on for every and wore me out. 

We had a great time. My darling wife Louella was a fashion plate wearing a velvet black dress with a slit up to mid thigh and stockings with seems up the back  and very high hills. She looked fabulous. 

This was a great weekend and left me feeling joyful and happy and optimistic.

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Suhail Khan discusses claim of Muslim Brotherhood take over of CPAC


According to leading conservative Frank Gaffney, CPAC has come under the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood, and told World Net Daily that Islamism has infiltrated the American Conservative Union. Suhail Khan discusses these absurd claims.

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Rod Williams has ties to Muslim terrorist organizations.

There are allegation that proponents of Shariah Law and Muslim Jihadist have infiltrated the conservative movement.

The most important conservative political gatherings in the nation is the Conservative Political Action Conference. It was founded in 1973 and anyone who is anyone in the conservative movement attends this annual gathering. It is often the  launching pad for conservative candidates who seek and often win the Republican Presidential nomination. Ronald Reagan, Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich have been keynote speakers at the annual CPAC conference.

The sponsor of the CPAC conference is the American Conservative Union. ACU has been around since 1964 and is a leading voice in grassroots American conservative thought and activism. In addition to ACU, over 100 organization including The American Rifle Association, Human Events, and Eagle Forum are participants in CPAC.

There are two specific claims to support the charge that CPAC has been infiltrated by jihadist:

1. Suhail Khan a Washington lobbyist and attorney, who was on the staff of the George W. Bush White House, is apparently a member of a group called Muslims for America and he is also on the board of the ACU.

From a web search, it appears that Muslims for America is a pro-American, patriotic, bi-partisan organization. They state they have, "zero tolerance for any kind of terrorism." Their web site denounces terrorism and features news of Muslim clerics and Muslim leaders and Muslim pop stars who denounce terrorism.

Khan's father, it is alleged, was a founder of the Muslim Brotherhood in America and Khan was also reportedly on the board of CAIR (The Council on American-Islamic Relations) and served on committees at ISNA (the Islamic Society of North America). Both CAIR and ISNA have been classified by the US government as terrorist organization and have a relationship to Hamas.

2. The other connection is Grover Norquist. Norquist, who is married to an Arab-American Muslim women, is on the board of ACU. He is a founder of Americans for Tax Reform and is a former Executive Director of the National Taxpayers Union. He has a long history of conservative and anti-communist activism including, during the cold war, assisting the Contra rebels in Nicaragua and building support for other anti-soviet movements in the world.

Americans for Tax Reform is a 501(c)(4) lobbying organization and was founded in 1985 and is dedicated to resisting increases in the personal or business income tax. Norquist is co-founder of an organization called the Islamic Free Market Institute. It is alleged that Norquist is also associated with other Muslim organizations that allegedly have ties to terrorist organization.

This latest charge of CPAC ties to terrorist organization may destroy CPAC. There has already developed a splintering in CPAC, not due to the allegation of ties to Muslim terrorist, but due to the admission of GoProud as a sponsor. GoProud is a gay conservative group and a couple of the family values type conservative organizations are pulling out of CPAC because CPAC admitted GoProud. CPAC has also been hit with an embezzlement scandal.

The allegations of CPAC jihadist ties have primarily been reported by World Net Daily, however they have also been made by other influential conservatives including Michelle Malkin, Pamela Geller, and David Horowitz.

I have no way of knowing if the allegation of conservatives with ties to terrorist organization are true or not or if the paranoid wing nuts are off on a tangent of character assignation looking for Jihadist under every bed. Certainly there have always been traitors and efforts of our enemies to infiltrate American organization and there have been front groups doing the bidding of foreign interest. It has always happened. Benedict Arnold and Alger Hiss were real people. Prior to American entry into World War II, Germany helped fund American anti-war groups and during the cold war there were numerous organizations that had domestic and foreign communist ties and supported the interest of our enemies. Still, I find it hard to believe someone of Mr. Norquest's stature and commitment to conservative causes is a Muslim Jihadist traitor.

Being part of a front group or doing the bidding of foreign interest is much different than simply having association with others who are associated with terrorist organization. People who are politically active and who try to influence opinion in the Muslim world are no doubt going to have associations with unsavory characters. People who seek to influence the opinion of others have to engage them. I am not going to declare someone guilty by association. Being married to a Muslim does not make you guilty of being a jihadist.

If Mr. Khan and Mr. Norquest are guilty, by association, of having ties to terrorist organizations, so am I. You see, I either am currently, or have been, a member of The American Conservative Union, The National Taxpayers Union, and Americans for Tax Reform. So, if Norquest is guilty of being a member of an organization that has ties to organizations that supported terrorist organizations then I am guilty of belonging to an organization that was heading by a person that was a member of an organization that had ties to organizations that supported terrorist organizations. If Mr. Khan is guilty of being the son of a founder of a terrorist associated organization , I am guilty of being a member of an organization that has on its board a man who is the son of a founder of a terrorist associated organization.

While I am confessing, I also once taught a homebuyersQuran. Also, some years ago I visited Turkey on a 15-day vacation and enjoyed it very much. I ate with Muslims and had long conversations with Muslims and stayed in Muslim-owned pensions and bought some beautiful oriental rugs from Muslim merchants. I visited the Grand Mosque and the Blue Mosque and some other mosque, the names of which I cannot recall.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Corker-Ryan 2012!

The Weekly Standard has a great article profiling Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin of and Tennessee's Senator Bob Corker. Author Fred Barnes say, "Paul Ryan and Bob Corker are unusual members of Congress. They know a lot."

In the Senate, Bob Corker, the only new Republican elected in 2006, figured out on his own that knowledge creates leverage in Congress. By 2008, he was a major player on the auto industry rescue and reform of financial market regulations, though he wound up voting against both of them. Over the past year, he started from scratch to learn about America’s decaying missile force and grabbed a significant role in passage of the arms control treaty with Russia last month. And in his bid to cut government spending and reduce debt, he’s found an ally outside the Senate—Ryan. (link)

I could get excited about a Corker-Ryan ticket!

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Barack Obama: ‘We Bring a Gun’

“If they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun.” - Barack Obama

'They ought to put him against a wall and shoot him." - Democratic Congressman Paul Kanjorski on GOP Governor Rick Scott.

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Monday, January 10, 2011

On Reading the Constituion

Daniel Greenfield: Who Needs the Constitution Anyway? 

The Democratic left insists that we don't need a document to protect our rights, because they'll protect us. Our rights just get in the way of them being able to offer us sweet juicy entitlements and preventing us from shooting ourselves in the head, or getting sick or doing the other stupid things that we do when the smothering blanket of the Nanny State isn't completely covering our heads like a socialist burqa. Where the Constitution held that we need to be protected from government, the Democratic left insists that we need to be protected from ourselves. And anyone who disagrees is obviously shilling for the big corporations. You know the ones whose health insurance we're now obligated to buy, by an unconstitutional law passed to protect us from ourselves. (link)



From The Washington Times: Liberal distaste for the Constitution 

Today, Lincoln's vision of reverence for the laws is needed more by the government than by the people. The point of reading the Constitution on the floor of Congress is to remind those who tread the marbled halls of power that they are not philosopher kings sent to Washington to give life to their every pet theory, every caprice, every whim. If the United States is to survive as a free nation, the government must return to first principles.(link)


Charles Krauthammer: Constitutionalism 

What originalism is to jurisprudence, constitutionalism is to governance: a call for restraint rooted in constitutional text. Constitutionalism as a political philosophy represents a reformed, self-regulating conservatism that bases its call for minimalist government - for reining in the willfulness of presidents and legislatures - in the words and meaning of the Constitution.

Hence that highly symbolic moment on Thursday when the 112th House of Representatives opened with a reading of the Constitution. Remarkably, this had never been done before - perhaps because it had never been so needed. The reading reflected the feeling, expressed powerfully in the last election, that we had moved far, especially the past two years, from a government constitutionally limited by its enumerated powers to a government constrained only by its perception of social need. (link)




Read the Constitution

If you have not recently read the Constitution, I encourage you to read it. Below are some excerpts. The first excerpt  is the first ten amendments which is the Bill of Rights. Everyone should know this, but if you forgot it, please note  that rights are not grants from the government but restrictions on government. Amendment number 10 is no doubt the most often ignored of the Bill of Rights. Amendment 10 is a major restriction on the power of the State.
1.Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances

2.A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed


3.No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law


4.The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized


5.No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation


6.In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense


7.In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law


8.Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted


9.The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people


10.The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people
Another excerpt which captures the essence of the Constitution is Section 8, Clearly Congress does not have the authority to do whatever it may wish, whatever may even reflect the popular will, or whatever may seem like a good idea. The powers of Congress are limited and specific and enumerated.
The Congress shall have the power

1.to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States


2.To borrow money on the credit of the United States


3.To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes


4.To establish an uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States


5.To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures


6.To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the United States


7.To establish post-offices and post-roads


8.To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries


9.To constitute tribunals inferior to the supreme court


10.To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offences against the law of nations


11.To declare war, grant letters of marquee and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water


12.To raise and support armies, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years


13.To provide and maintain a navy


14.To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces


15.To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions


16.To provide for organizing, arming and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress


17.To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such district (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of the government of the United States, and to exercise like authority over all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dock-yards, and other needful buildings: And,


18.To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof


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Saturday, January 8, 2011

A Boomer reflects on the sixties

"Those on the front line of the baby boom generation, once carefree souls who frolicked through the Summer of Love, are now coming to terms with an inexorable fact: The're turning 65 in 2011." (link)

I sick and tired of every news article or TV show that speaks of baby boomers, characterizing them as left wing, hippy, dope-smoking, college students. I was not a carefree soul frolicking through the summer of love in 1967, I was serving in the U. S. Air Force in the middle of Missouri. When Woodstock happened, I was in Viet Nam.

If I had not been in the service, The Summer of Love would still not have had any appeal to me except for the part about getting laid a lot. Woodstock was not my type of music and I would have had no desire to be at that orgy of excess, mud and madness. I am a boomer but don't assume I relate to Woodstock. I was more into Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard, and Buck Owens.

Even marijuana use is exaggerated in its importance. Many of the kids who smoked a little dope, did not identify dope smoking as something that defined who they were. It was something they did.

Certainly there were societal changes in the sixties and changes in attitude, especially about sex and conformity. Much of the style however such as bell bottom pants and long hair, which may have started out as an anti conformity statements or rebellion, quickly became simply the new style. By the time the fashion of the sixties became popular, that fashion became the new conformity.

Sure there were a lot of weekend hippies and people who adopted a certain fashion in clothes, hair style, musical taste and politics in order to be "cool." But really, that did not amount to much either. By the mid-70's, the braless babes, grunge, beads, long hair and bare feet of the sixties were replaced by the glamor of the disco era.

The politics of not all boomers was radical either. The street theater and leftist activism may have created an impression that all youth were left-wing. That is a misconception. There was always a large conservative youth vote and by the time the bulk of the boomer generation were of voting age, most of them were voting Republican and the youth vote was owned by Ronald Reagan.

In the sixties there were many more hard-working young people who respected their parents and authority than there were hippies. There were more people married, and going to work every day and raising families than there were in college or living in communes. There were many more of us baby boomers who served in Vietnam with honor than there were those who protested the war. As a percentage of young people, an insignificant number were at Woodstock or Haight-Ashbury for the Summer of Love.

The media romanticizes the sixties and creates a stereotype of the youth of the era. We do all relate to the image portrayed by the media. Recently on TV, there was a week of nostalgia and celebration of the life and times of John Lennon commemorating his death. I could care less. John Lennon was not an important person in my life. Don't assume everyone in their 60's is a John Lennon fan. I still miss Johnny Cash.

When I think of the person that epitomizes the anti-establishment spirit of the sixties and who should be the sixties poster child, I think of Charles Manson. The sixties was an ugly period better forgotten.

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Will Congress will become more respectful of the Constitution?

Do you remember when during a press conference, Nancy Peolsi was asked where the Constitution authorized Congress to order Americans to buy health insurance? She dismissed the question by saying, “Are you serious?” and then took another question.

The House will no longer be so dismissive of the Constitution. The first order of business in the House when it convenes today will be a reading aloud of the Constitution. A new house rule will require that each bill filed in the House cite its specific constitutional authority.

The reading of the Constitution and the requirement that a bill site its constitutional authority may be symbolic and may not change liberal behavior. I am sure many bills will site what has become the very elastic “commerce clause” or “general welfare clause.” Nevertheless I think this is a good move. Symbolism can be important.

Saying the Pledge of Allegiance may be simple symbolism and may not necessarily make one a better American, but in some way I think it does. Reciting the Pledge of Allegiance may cause one to pause and contemplate the loyalty they owe this nation and the meaning of being an American.

For the non-believer, public prayer may be simple symbolism but public prayer brings solemnity to an occasion and often expresses a spirit of a grateful heart. Public prayer may even be beneficial for the non-believer.

Marriage is often dismissed by people who are shacking up as mere symbolism. People will ask, why do we need a piece of paper to show our love for each other? While marriage is a legal bonding it is also a pledge of fidelity and a public statement of intentions. I think it is important. I think it changes behavior.

While the reading of the Constitution may seem like a time-waster to some, I applaud it. Congress needs to remember that their oath of office means smomething. They need to be reminded that there are supposed to be limits on their authority. Maybe citing the constitutional authority for a bill, when a member of Congress drafts a bill, will cause that member to think twice before proposing a major government expansion. Maybe Congress will become more respectful of the Constitution.

Maybe, when the question that was asked of Nancy Pelosi is again asked in the future it will not be dismissed as a ridiculous question unworthy of a response.

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

"RINO on the menu:" Tea Party Nation targets Bob Corker for defeat.

OK Republican, get in a circle. Ready, Aim, Fire!!

Republicans have had a taste of victory, but it is still not too late to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. We can now start shooting each other.  To insure we do not take the Senate in 2012, we must defeat sitting Republicans and nominate unelectable "real Republican."  Real Republicans  like Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell, and Joe Miller.

Nashville's own Judson Phillips, founder and CEO of Tea Party Nation says 2012 will be good year for the Tea Party and, "RINO is on the menu! Senator Bob Corker is his number one target for defeat.

Running colorful candidates who say interesting things and have a lot of passion is a lot more fun than actually trying to govern. Governing is hard work. We would not want to actually win elections and have to take responsibility for solving problems would we? Being on the outside and going to demonstrations is a lot more fun than actually winning elections isn't it?  Do you think we could nominate Christine O'Donnell as our Presidential nominee? Or, maybe Judson Phillips?

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Favorite Commercial of the year: Piggy goes Wee, Wee, Wee all the way home.

This GEICO commercial is my favorite commercial of the year. I like this commercial better than most of the programs on TV. I laugh every time I see it. "Do woodchucks chuck wood," is a close runner-up.

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